About Joseph Morgan, Jr.
Nathaniel H. Morgan, Morgan Genealogy: A History of James Morgan of New London, Conn. and his Descendants; from 1607 to 1869; Hartford: Press of Case, Lockwood & Brainard, 1869, p. 35.
Rev. JOSEPH, (65) b. 6 Nov. 1671, s. of Joseph, (5)
m. Sarah Emmons. His name stands on the catalogue of Yale College as one of the graduates in the class of 1702, but he was probably not a regular graduate, and the degree of A.B. was doubtless conferred upon him as an honorary one, for according to the "History of Greenwich," Conn. he was settled over first church, Greenwich, in 1697, and in 1700, dismissed and settled over second church, Greenwich. He was also a regular preacher in Bedford, Westchester county, N.Y. in 1699, and was ordained by the Fairfield county association in 1700. From 1704 to 1708, he was again the minister at Greenwich, Ct. In 1709, he was settled as pastor of the Presbyterian church in Freehold, New Jersey, and in 1728, was charged before the Synod with "practising astrology, countenancing promiscuous dancing, and transgressing in drink." These charges were not sustained. He resigned, however, and took charge of the two church, at Hopewell and Maidenhead, N.J. and in 1736, was again charged with intemperance, and suspended from the ministry, but was restored again in 1738, "on the intercession of many good people." He was a preacher of considerable note, and several of his discourses and sermons were published; among them, one on the death of his eldest son, Joseph, a graduate of Yale College, 1723, and died the same year; a "Reply to a Railer against the doctrine of Election," 1724; "Sin its own Punishment," 1728; and "Love to our Neighbors," third edition, 1749. The sermon on the death of his son was entitled "A Discourse at Freehold, in New Jersey, Upon the Sorrowful Occasion of the Death of the Young and very Hopeful JOSEPH MORGAN, of Yale College, B.A., who departed this Life the 28 of Nov. 1723." It was printed by Samuel Green, at New London, and presents nothing very striking, either in thought or style of expression.
In his letters dated at Freehold, in 1721 and 1722, he speaks of his two sons, one age 17, and the other, 11, "as good scholars," and "one other son a little older;" this last evidently the Joseph whose death is above alluded to. Efforts have been made by several others as well as myself, to trace the history of this Rev. Joseph Morgan to its close, and a further account of his posterity, but hitherto without success. _______________________________________________
Rev. George Hale, D.D., A HISTORY OF THE OLD PRESBYTERIAN CONGREGATION OF "THE PEOPLE OF MAIDENHEAD AND HOPEWELL," MORE ESPECIALLY OF THE FIRST PREBYTERIAN CHURCH OF HOPEWELL, AT PENNINGTON, NEW JERSEY, DELIVERED AT THE PASTOR'S REQUEST, ON SABBATH MORNING, JULY 2D, 1876, Philadelphia: Press of Henry B. Ashmead, Nos. 1102 & 1104 Sansom Street, 1876, p. 28-30
p. 53: "III. The Rev. JOSEPH MORGAN was the third pastor. His name has led to the opinion that he was a native of Wales. He graduated at Yale College in 1702. President Woolsey, in a letter to the writer, says: "Some interest is attached to Mr. Morgan from the fact that he was not only one of the members of the first class in Yale College, but also the only one of the class who did not also take his degree at Harvard; that is the only one veritably educated at Yale alone." He was licensed to preach in 1697, and ordained in 1700. He preached the sermon at the ordination of the Rev. Jonathan Dickinson of Elizabethtown, New Jersey, September 9, 1709. He was settled in the ministry first at Greenwich, Connecticut. In 1710 he removed to Freehold, New Jersey, being received by the Presbytery September 21, 1710. Here he remained as pastor until 1729, when he undertook the pastoral charge of the church of Maidenhead and Hopewell.
While at Freehold, he was greatly afflicted by the death of his son Joseph, a graduate of Yale, who was preparing for the ministry. He died on the 28th of November, 1723; on the 30th the father preached from Job x. 2, and on the next day from Psalm cxxxvii. 1. These discourses are in print, and to be found in the Library of Princeton Theological Seminary. Another printed sermon of Mr. Morgan's is deposited in the Library of the Antiquarian Society, Worcester, Massachusetts.
During his pastorate of eight years, from 1729 to April 6, 1737, he resided at Maidenhead, on the property for many years occupied by the late George Brearley.
He was deposed from the ministry for intemperance, and afterwards restored. All the proceedings of the case now lie before me, but nothing would be gained by their publication. His name appears for the last time on the records of the Synod as an absentee, May 8, 1740. When and where he died, and where he was buried, has not been ascertained." _______________________________________________
Teunis G. Bergen, REGISTER, IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER, OF THE EARLY SETTLERS OF KINGS COUNTY, LONG ISLAND, N.Y., FROM ITS FIRST SETTLEMENT BY EUROPEANS TO 1700 (Polyanthos, Cottonport, 1973).
p. 212: [MORGAN] Joseph of Gravesend, m. Oct. 14, 1696, Sarah dau. of John Emans, and settled in Freehold, N.J.
THE REV. JOSEPH MORGAN, PASTOR OF THE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH OF FREEHOLD AND MIDDLETOWN. 1709—1731
Cover title: "The Presbiterian Church of Freehold and Middletowne", New Jersey, 1709, 1729. An Early parochial school : being two papers relating to Presbyterian Church history in Monmouth County, N.J. Reprinted from the Freehold Transcript. Steen, James, cl. of 1871.
The importance of the career of the Rev. " William Tenaeut and the circumstances attendant upon those of the Revs. John Boyd and John Tennett, have in a measure obscured the life and services of the Rev. Joseph Morgan. And yet, as further facts are discovered, and, as discovered, are ranged in their appropriate position, the historic assembling becomes more perfect and we begin to understand the independent and amorphous character of the dissenting churches of Monmouth County in the first half of the Eighteenth century. The tendency always is to ante-date the formation and foundation of churches, but the early settlers in Monmouth County were more intensely interested in obtaining the preaching of the word than in formal church organization. No one therefore, who thoroughly investigates the ecclesiastical history of that early period, can fail to note the informality with which the "fathers" weut about obtaining religious services.
John Boyd, the young Scotch-Irish Presbyterian preacher, who had come tn Monmouth County on the invitation of Peter Watson, died on the 30th day of August, 1708, in the 29ih year of his age, and Peter Watson had administered upon his estate on the 8th of September. The church had probably never been very strong and many of the Scotch settlers who had united in its organization, if such an informal association might be so termed, had emigrated to points South and West and bevond the confines of New Jersey. The weakness of the Scotch element after the death of Mr. Boyd was such that they were ready to make the alliance which the records demonstrate to have been made. For several years before the advent of Mr. Boyd to Monmouth County there had been a stream of Dutch settlers from New York and Long Island coming into Monmouth County. Some of them had been members of the Dutch Church on Long Island or the children of such. The ministers of the Long Island Dutch Churches felt a responsibility for these members of their church and for their children, and for a time sought to minister to them, in things spiritual, by coming at more or less frequent intervals over the Bay to Monmouth County to preach to them in the Dutch language. Work enough had they at home, and the trip was by no means pleasant, nor was it, at all times, perfectly^safe, and so when the pastor of the Scotch people had ceased from his labors, the good "Dutch dominies," from Long Island, were also quite ready to give over their long and perilous trips, in sailing vessels, across New York Bay, and perfectly willing that the good Dutchmen in Monmouth should unite with their Scotch brethren in a "Presbyterian Church." Dutch ministers were few and the Dutch churches were all under the ecclesiastical government of the Classis of Amsterdam, Holland. It was as hard to procure ministers from Holland as to support them when they arrived. It is therefore little wonder that the Dutch settlers of Monmouth had not succeeded in effecting a church organization or obtaining a Dutch pastor. It so fell out, however, that an English preacher, probably a Congregationalist at first, one Joseph Morgan, had studied the Dutch 'language, to the end that he might be able to preach in that, as well as in the English. His grandfather, James Morgan, who was born in Wales, 1607, sailed for Boston, March, 1636, married Marjory Hill of Roxbury, August 6,164", and died in 1685 at the age of seventv-eight. Their third son, Joseph, married Dorothy, the daughter of Thomas Park, in April, 1670, while their son, the subject of the present sketch, was born November 6,1674. Rev. Joseph Morgan's first pastorate was the First Congregational Church of Greenwich, Conn., in 1697. He was dismissed from that church in 1700, and settled over the Second Church, Greenwich, in which church he was ordained by the Fairfield Association. In 1699, however, he also preached in the Bedford, Westchester County, New York, Presbyterian church, which was about a dozen miles from Greenwich. He had an honorary degree with the class of 1702 of Yale College, although he had then been preaching several years. It was while in Greenwich that he studied the Dutch language and having heard of the vacancy in the field at Monmouth he came to Freehold (township) and probably preached there several times in the summer of 1708. The result was an arrangement whereby in consideration of his ability to preach both in English and in Dutch, a Presbyterian Church was organized, composed as well of the Scotch remnant as of the Dutch settlers. This was by no means to have been unexpected. The greatest comity had for a long time obtained between the two denominations,aud again and again in view of the difficulty of obtaining Dutch preachers to come to America, suggestions bad been made of the union of the Dutch with the Presbyterian, at least in separate churches where neither was able to support a clergyman alone. Mr. Morgan must have come to Monmouth within a very short time after Mr. Boyd's death. We find him purchasing on February 6th, 1709, of John Campbell, quite a little property between "Spotswood's North brook" and Spotswood's Middle brook." This land he sold to Jacobus Romeyn, December 10th, 1714, for two hundred pounds, and he in turn in 1720 to Archibald Craig, for two hundred and forty. He could not have been here long, until the Dutch, finding that he could minister to them in their language also, joined their Scotch neighbors, and by reason of their numbers and influence soon controlled the situation. They were able to offer various inducements to Mr. Morgan. There was living not far from Marlboro, Ghertie, the widow of Christopher or Stoffel Jansen Romain, (usually spelled in the older records "Bomine.") Arid she invested £450, in the purchase of a farm of one hundred acres from Richard Salter and Sarah, his wife, on the 9ch of June, 1709, the deed for which contains this, declaring a trust therein:— "intended for ye use of ye Prisbiterian ministry." As printed in various publications, this elau-e has been rendered "for the use of the Dutch Presbyterian minister." Avery minute inspection of the record of the deed in Book E. of Deeds, page 11, in the Monmouth County Clerk's office in Freehold, fails to discover the word "Dutch." This farm was after his mother's death conveyed by Jacobus Romine, on December 10, 1714, to John Schenck, Cornelius Covenhoven and Peter Tyson, for the use of the Congregation. This farm was upon a branch of "Hop Brook" and immediately adjoined the farm of Alexander Nepier, a part of which it will be remembered Mr. Nepier conveyed for the site of the Old Scot's Church, in 1727. This latter deed, i. e. , from Jacobus Romiue to Shanck, Cuvenhoven and Tyson, does not appear of record either in the County Cierk's office at Freehold, nor yet in the office of the Secretary of State in Trenton. It is, however, referred to, in a deed from John Schenck, Cornelius Covenhoven and Peter Tyson, on September 26th, 1732, to "Garret Schanok and Jacob Covenhoven, elders of the Low Dutch Congregation of protestants, as the same was established by the Synod of Dort in the years of our Lord, sixteen hundred and eighteen and sixteen hundred and nineteen, now resitting in the township of Middletown, and their successors." &«. This deed, recorded in Book E-2 of Deeds, page 541, in the office of the Secretary of State at Trenton, was of course, so made after the Dutch bad organized their own church and is the first recorded formal recognition of the Dutch Beformed denomination. It conveyed an equal undivided half of the 100 acres and the other half would appear to have been re- tained for the use and benefit of the Freehold township congregation. Hew or when this property passed out of the congregation's possession does not appear, but probably before the purchase of another and ditlerent farm in 1748, for the same purpose. Mr. Morgan, a few weeks after this deed was given, appeared in Court, asking to qualify himself according to the acts of Parliament then bearing upon the subject, on the first Tuesday in September, 1709. Andon page 152, of the book of "Minutes 1688-1721" at Freehold, the entry is: "Mr. Joseph Morgain. Minister of ye Presbiterians in Freehold and Middletowne did personally appear in Court and Desired that he might be admitted to Qualifie himself As the Law Directs in yt behalf. Ordered yt further Consideration thereof be Refered TJutill the next Court of Quarter Sessions."
The next minute under date of Decemlnr 7th, 1709, is found on page 155:"Whereas Mr. Joseph Morgaine,Minister of ye nPresbiterians in Freehold, made application to ye Last Court of Quarter Sessions yt he might be admitted to Qualifie himself as ye Law Directs in yt behalf, & ye Court Ordered yt further consideration thereof should be Befered uutill this Sessions, & now ye sd Joseph Morgaine Appeared in open sessiauSjbeing presented by Severall of said Congregation,viz-Jacob Lane, John Wicoff, John Sutfin, William Hendrickson, John Essmith, William Wilkins, Auri Martison, in behalf of themselves & ye rest of their brethren, and was by ye court permited to Qualifie himself, and accordingly ye said Joseph Morgaine hath quallitied himself, Viz, did take ye oaths made in a statute made in ye first jeare of their Majesties Beigne, Intitled An Act fur preventing and Removiug all Questions & Disputes Concerning ye Assembling of that parliament and did make & subscribe ye Declaration mentioned in ye Statute made in ye 30th yeare of ye Beigue of King Charles ye 2d Intitled ami Act for preventing papists from siting in Either house of parliament, and did also declare his Approbation of & did subscribe ye Articles of Religion mentioned in ye Statute made in ye 30th yeare of ye Beigne of ye Late Queen Elizabeth, Except ye 34th & 36th, au«t these words of ye 20th article viz: the Church hath power to decree Bites & Cerimonies ol' faith A yet; All which are here Entred of Becord according to ye Direction of Au other Act of parliament. Intitled, an act for Exempting her M tjesties protestant subjects desenting from ye Church of England from ye penalties of certain Lawes * * *."At this time it was impossible for dissenting churches or congregations to be incorporated under the law. It, however, was equivalent to an incorporation to have the Meeting House registered and the minister qualified to exercise his ministerial function in those registered meeting houses.
The majority of those who presented the reverend geDtleman as the'r pastor were Dutch, three of them were upon the grand jury of the County, then in session, namely Messrs. Lane, Wicof and Sutfin, and Jacob Lane was the foreman. The omission of the word "Dutch" in this legal registration of the Congregation of which they thus formally and legally ottered themselves as representatives cannot be accounted for, by inadvertance or misunderstanding. They were men of property, intelligence and prominence in the county, and stronger contemporaneous evidence that they considered themselves mem- bers of a Presbyterian congregation cannot well be imagined. Aurie Mattison may have represented the Scotch people in the body "presenting" their pastor to the Court, but every indication is that he, too was a Dutchman with an English or Scotch wife. Of his nine children, all would have seemed to have married other than Dutch partners. Two of his daughters, Elizabeth and Mary married William Hugau; Martha, William Norcross; Catharine, Samuel Kerr; Rachel, Joseph Hankinson; Aaron, Sarah Cook. His relations to the Presbyterian community determined his allegiance when the separation came. In fac>, of the seven, only "Essmith" (probably "Nesmith") and "Wilkins," would seem not to have been Dutch. There is no reference, as the reader will see, in this "qualification" of the Rev. Joseph Morgan to either "Dutch" or "Reformed" church. It is plainly evident, however, that the Dutch settlers were very largely in the majority in that Presbyterian church of Freehold and Middletown. The question which naturally arises is, in what house or houses of worship did the Rev. Joseph Morgan officiate. There is little question, but that the Scotch meetinghouse was in use. The attempt to demonstrate that there was a "Dutch Reformed" meeting-house within a mile or two of that Scotch meeting-house seems to be rather superfluous. There was at this time at the other end of the congregation in the village of Middletown.a Presbyterian meeting-house, originally an independent meetiug house.which stood on the lot still known as the "Presbyterian Graveyard" in that village. It is a curious coincidence that William Wilkins,at the time Rev. Joseph Morgan was presented by himself and the other representatives of the Presbyterian congregation, owned the farm of which the so-called "Presbyterian Graveyard" had been a part. It is now the farm of Dr. Edward Taylor, in Middletown. The two meeting-houses therefore, in which the Rev. Joseph Morgan preached were probably the one at Free Hill near Marlboro, known as "Old Scots" and the other, the old meeting house in Middletown village, and both were Presbyterian. Wilkin« parted with his farm, June 10, 1716, to George Taylor, in whose family the title has since remained. It is to he noted in passing that the widow, Ghertie Romain, appears to have been the first and only woman trustee for church property in Monmouth County. In 1723, Andrew Johnson is said to have conveyed to Daniel Hendrickson and Johan- nes Polhemus, for three pounds, a lot near Holmdel village, upon which a meeting-house had already been built for a year or two. This deed we have failed to find of record, but it is said to have contained this clause, "for the sole use, > enefit and behoof of the people belonging to the religious organizatiou known as the "Dutch Presbyterians"("Bicentennial Reformed church of the Navasinks" p 37.) Evidently there was as yet no thought of a separation from the Presbyterian Church of Freehold and Middletown. Joseph Morgan was received as a member of the Presbytery of Philadelphia, in September, 1710. He was a man of considerable learning and corresponded with Cotton Mather and other prominent men of his day, in Latin. He was possessed of an inventive turn of mind. He had several children, one of whom he sent to Yale College. He not only preached throughout Monmouth County, comprising as it did at the time, what is now Ocean county, but also in Middlesex, and it is recorded even in the region of the Raritan, in what is now Somerset. Controversy arose between him and some of the Dutch ministers as to his invasion of what they conceived to be their special territory. Dominie Frelinghuysen, in the course of a letter to him in 1725 referring to mutual accusations of sowing dissension in their respective congregations, ad- dressed him as pastor of a "Presbyterian congregation." Mr. Morgan, was a man of deep piety as well, and it is recorded that at the execution at Perth Amboy, in 1727, of an Indian king for killing one John Leonard, he was selected out of the several clergymen Eresent by king Weequahelah, to pray with him.
The Scotch part of the congregation was at first so small that he could give them but one- quarter of his time. They so increased, however, in numbers and in financial strength, that they began to demand a larger portion of his service. To this, the Dutch end of the congregation would not consent, and the dispute waxed bitter. Several efforts were made by the Scotch people, who perhaps felt themselves 'o be more essentially Presbyterian than their Dutch neighbors, to compel a larger proportion of his services to be given them. In view of the arrangement into which Rev. Joseph Morgan had entered, he did not feel at liberty so to do. There was trouble also toward the latter part of his time, about that part of his salary due from the Scotch which was not adjusted until the 15th of October, 1730, at which time he had probably severed his connection with the Scotch. Complaint against him was made by some of his Scotch constituents to the Synod of Philadelphia at their meeting in September, 1728. A series of charges were preferred, one of which seems to have been coupled with a request that they be allowed to separate from their Dutch brethren and constitute a separate church. The Synod, however, on September 20,1728, as to this particular part of their cooiplaint adjudged "Mr. Morgan's answer in reference thereto is sufficient and that the people had no just ground for separation on that score." He was, as we have already intimated, obliged to abandon his services to the Scotch people in 1729 or '30, and "on June 3, 17 0," as stated by Rev. Isaac Brown, in 1824, in his sermon on Dr. Woodhull, "Tennent congregation was regularly organized." The feeling occasioned by this can easily be imagined. It is not to be wondered at, that the Dutch members of the congregation did not apply to the Presbytery to be recognized as a second Presbyterian congregation. Very possibly too, Rev. Joseph Morgan, who still continued to minister to the Dutch fragment of his congregation, after having ceased his relationship to the Scotch, might have thought to show his adversaries that there were other reformed churches besides the Presbyterian. Accordingly we find the Dutch part of the church for the first time making overtures to the Classis of Amsterdam and putting itself for the first time in subjection or subordination to the ecclesiastical authorities of the Dutch church, in 1730. The letter written by the Co-jsistory, although lengthy, is so full of interest we give it complete. Thedeed,however, which had been made as well for the farm as for the church property at Holmdel, did not tie the property down to the Dutch Reformed Church. So far as the church property at Holmdel was concerned, it was of little use to the Scotch a- d as to the farm it had been so clearly the gift of the Dutch membership that, whatever might have been its legal status, the Scotch were not in equity entitled to any part of it. And so we have seen how Messrs. Schanck, Covenhoven, and Tyson proceeded in 1732 to make a deed for the "Ghertie Roniaiu" farm to the elders of the "Low Dutch Congregation, &c " But that farm was quii e near Old Scots, and in 1748 another farm was purchased containing 138 acres and 26 square perches, for forty-one pounds, eight shillings and eleven pence, of Thomas Kiunan of Freehold, "on a small run of water called the First brook running into Hop River." This has been supposed to have been identical with the "Ghertie Romain tract" with a 38 acre addition. (Bi-centennial &c, pag' 35). But this is clearly an error, as she purchased of Richard Salter, in 1709, while Thomas Kinnan "took up" from the proprietors of East Jersey in 1742 3 the land he conveyed January 28, 1748, to Cornelius Vanderveer and John Hans. There is moreover, no limitation or trust declared in Kiuuan's deed, recorded in the office of the Secretary of State, at Trenton, in Book G 2 of Deeds, page 429, but on page 431, there is a conveyance between Cornelius Vanderveer of Middletown and John Haens of Freehold, to Johannes Leyster and Tunis Swart of Middletown, and Tunis Deuice and William Coven- hoven of Freehold, reciting that the grantees are "elders and members of the Low Dutch Congregation of Protestants, as the same was established by the Synod of Dort, in the yeats of our Lord 1618 and 1619, now residing in the said towns of Middletown and Freehold," and that:-" Whereas, the said Cornelius Vanderveer and John Hans were intrusted and employed by the said Johannes Leyster, Tunis Swart, Tunis Den ire and William Covenhoven in behalf of themselves and the rest of the members of the said Low Dutch Protestant Congregations, in the aforesaid towns of Middletown and Freehold, to purchase and buy a certain tract of laud equally to be divided between the said congregations, both in quantity and quality, for them, their successors and assigns forever. The said Cornelius Vanderveer and John Hans pursuant to the trust and confidence in them as aforesaid re- Eosed, did lately buy and purchase a tract of and &o in said town of Freehold <Stc." The marked contrast in the description of the trust upon which the real estate is conveyed, before and after the disruption and the formal union of the Dutch with the Classis of Amsterdam, is enough, even aside from the record evidence to prove that there was no Reformed Church prior to Rev. Joseph Morgan's resignation I am not unmindful of the entry in the church records (Bicenti nnial <Scc, p. 31) "la the year of our Lord, 1709, on the 19th of October, the Rev. Joseph Morgan, a minister of tne Gospel of Jesus Christ, was installed as pastor of the Reformed congregation of Freehold and Middletown, in the preseuce of Rev. Bernardus Freeman of King's County." This statement in the Dutch lauguage, and in the past tense, is quite different from an allegation that he was installed pastor of a "Low Dutch Protestant Congregation," and "in the presence of" excludes the participation of Mr. Freeman, in the installation. Moreover, then as now, the legal title of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland was, ' The Reformed Church of Scotland."
It is to be noted that in the letter written by the Consistory of the Church to the Classis of Amsterdam, that it was their "idea that within a few years the church will be moved close to the parsonage." Which was at that time on the "Roii'ain" 100 acre tract near "Old Scots." It is barely possible that, owing to the disposition of the Scotch to move to the present site of Tennent and abandon "Old Scots," the Dutch Church thought to acquire the building. For it is not without significance that immediately upon the separation and the organization of Tennent Church on June 3d, 1730, steps were taken to build the Presbyterian church on the present site of Tennent, farther removed from Old Scots, and the home of Rev. Joseph Morgan. This can explain many things which have been iu doubt before. It can explain where the good Dutch brethren worshipped in Freehold (township) before the building of the church at Marlboro after the advent of Dominie Haagehoort. It can explain where the Dutch brethren worshipped before the building of the church at Middletown (Holmdel) in 1718- 19, up»n the lot given by Andrew Johnson. It can explain also how such names as those of Jonathan Forman and other Scotch people appear as uniting with the church of the Navesinksin the church record, although I am not unmindful that it has been claimed to have been caused by inter-marriage of the Formans and other Scotchmen with Dutch wives. The contrary is true for it was the Dutch that were Anglicized and not the Scotch made Dutch, as is exemplified by the statement of Dominie Haagehoort, in his first letter home to the Classis of Amsterdam. And one need only to glance at the subsequent baptismal record of Tennent to see how many of the Dutch, as the result of the pastoral services and preaching of the Rev. Joseph Morgan, remained in the Presbyterian Church.
Joseph Morgan preached his farewell sermon to the Dutch part of his congregation on the 2nd day of August, 1731. Rev. Gerard Haagehoort arrived the next day, the 3d of August, and was installed on Monday the 9th of August, 1731. Instead of confining him- self to the Scotch people, as represented in|the letter of the Consistory, Mr. Morgan served for awhile the churches of Hopewell and Maidenhead and later, in 1742, died while preaching along the shore of New Jersey in missionary districts. Although opposition was manifested to him and charges were made in Synod and in Presbytery, none of them appear to have been well founded except the one of intemperance, for which he was suspended by his Presbytery, for a short time, in 1736. One revival of religion at least was experienced while he was pastor of the church in Monmouth County. And his contemporaries evidently regarded him as a man of deep spirit- uality. Not only does he have the recommendation of the Consistory of the church of the Navesinks, in the letter which we append, but even Dominie Frelinghuysen with whom he had had bitter controversies, testified to his christian character in a certificate of the united churches of the Raritan district to the Clussis of Amsterdam hearing date the 17th of October, 1731, which says among other things: "Rev. (Jos.) Morgan is also a dissenter, for he belongs to the same Classis (Presbytery) and Synod as this other dissenter and as a member helped to ordain him by the laying on of hands. He has now for several years ministered to hoth Dutch and English on the Navesinks. He baptised many children here before our pastor (Frelinghuysen) came, and nobody speaks a word against him. Rev. (Gilbert) Tennent is a Presbyterian, and they are surely orthodox," etc. In the name of all
T. J. Frelinghuysen Cornelius Bennit Albert Voorhees William Willemse John Van Dyck
Morgan's grave is unmarked, nor are any descendants of his known to the writer, but that his work was no less important in the up- building of Presbyterianism in this county, than that of others who are more noted, can hardly be denied by a student of the history of the church. Tennent and Shrewsbury, Allentown and Cranbury, all have carried upon their rolls, from their earliest history, descendants of the good Dutch Presbyterian members of the Presbyterian church of Freehold and Middletown, during the period of "Dominie" Morgan's ministry. Preaching at Old Scot's, farming his farm at Marlboro, ministering in the old Presbyterian Church in Middletown, doing missionary work along the shores of Monmouth, and what is now Ocean, making journeys up into the region of the Raritan, and down in South Jersey, studying under difficulties, a man of large parts, great determination and zeal, the effects of his labors still remain, while the record of what he did, and who he was, has almost passed out of sight.
The subjoined letters, from Volume 4, of the Ecclesiastical Records of New York, were copied from the Letter Books and Portfolios of the Classis of Amsterdam, Holland. They are valuable in themselves, to the student of Monmouth County history, aside from the proof that they furnish, of our claim that there was but one church, instead of two, and that a Presbyterian one, the great majority of whose membership was Dutch. The italics in Rev. Gerard Haagehoort's letter, it should be said, are our own. His strictures seem natural but the Classis was not to blame. The call was cleverly drawn, so that the prospective "Dominie" might not be deterred from coming over, and it would seem rather the fault of Dominies DuBois and Morgan, that a franker exposition of the situation was not made:
Ecclesiastical Record* of the Stale of New York. Volume IV, page 2506. The Consistory of Freehold and Middletown, N. J. to certain individuals to secure them a, minister, April 1730, addressed:
Letter to Messrs. Van de Wall, Vos. Reels, and Rysma authorizing them to make out a call. Portfolio N. Y. Vol. I.
"Authorization to settle on and call a minister for th» Dutch Reformed Church of Freehold and Middletown, on the Navesink, in New Jersey; sent to the Revs. Hermanus Van de Wall, Henry Vos, L. Beels, and Tiberias Rysma (Rytsma).
Reverend and Much Esteemed Sirs:
For more than thirty years now (1700-1731) divers families have come from time to time. from New York to take up their abode in this adjoining province of New Jersey. Many have also come from Long Island to the Navesinks. They themselves, or their parents, were members of the Dutch Reformed Church, and at first they were ministered to by the preachers of Long Island, who by turns, at certain fixed times of the year, came over for this purpose. But it was too difficult for them to continue to do this, and also not without peril, on account of the Great Bay they had to cross, and the considerable distance, for they made the journey in a small vessel and under fierce winds.
But about twenty years ago (1709) while this community was still small and unable to support a minister from Holland, an opportunity occurred so that we could be served by a regular pastor. There was then here a well known English preacher, Joseph Morgan by name, and of orthodox faith. He was also somewhat acquainted with the Dutch language and was willing to hold services, partly for the Scotch in English and partly for us in Dutch, doing as well as he could. The matter was referred to the ministers of Long Island. They approved of the plan, and recognized Mr. Morgan as orthodox and of an edifying deportment. He was therefore installed[?] by Rev. Freeman, as our regular pastor and teacher, and, as was said, it is now about [more than?] twenty years that we have enjoyed the services of Rev. Joseph Morgan at Freehold and Middletown. He has faithfully and diligently persevered in his duties, according to his ability, and to our edification.
Meantime, [1709-1731] the Scotch Congregation here greatly increased. It therefore urged the Rev. Morgan thenceforth to let them enjoy at least half of his services, for they had not had more than one-fourth before. They urged this so strongly that Rev. Morgan at length of his own accord, (so far as we were concerned) made an amicable and urgent request that we the undersigned, elders and deacons of Freehold and Middletown, would release him from his services among us. He argued that the Scotch people desired, if not the whole, at least the half of his services, and he wished therefore, to resign those (which he had given us) in as much as he was obliged to relinquish one or the other congregation. Upon due consideration of the matter, he had resolved to give himself entirely to the Scotch Church, if he could obtain a proper release from the Dutch, inasmuch as he preaches with more satisfaction in the English language than in the Dutch.
We could not consent to this until we had ascertained the opinion of our people. We therefore spoke about it to all our members, and learned their unanimous readiness to write to Holland for a Dutch minister. We accordingly released from his office our esteemed and greatly beloved pastor, Rev. Morgan, since there was nothing else to do, although we did it reluctantly. We did this also, because the youth and the un-instructed needed to be taught the Catechism in Dutch, but this could not be expected to go on very smoothly with Rev. Morgan, who had not a perfect mastery of the Dutch. Mr. Morgan also expressed the opinion that it would tend to the prosperity of the Gospel among us, if the Dutch should have a Dutch minister, and if he (Morgan) should preach in English only. He has also given us a declaration in writing that he fully relinquishes his services among us and voluntarily resigns his office, for the reasons mentioned, as regular pastor and teacher of the Dutch Church of Freehold and Middletown; although as our nominal pastor, he still occasionally holds services among us, and administers the sacraments, until a minister shall arrive from Holland, inasmuch as he will, until then occupy the nearest relations to us.
Inasmuch then as our congregation desires, under God's Providence, the happiness of having, as soon as possible, like the other Dutch churches in this country, a Dutch minister from Holland, able, orthodox, and pious, that they may enjoy the ministrations of the Gospel, and Inasmuch as we, the undersigned elders and den cons are authorized thereto by the whole congregation; for we have obtained the necessary signatures of every member for this purpose, and have also the full consent and approval of Rev. Morgan, as appexrs from his subjoined signature hereto. And also with the advice and counsel of persons of inelligence, and in the presence of Rev. G. DuBois, and finally, after calling upon the name of God, we adopted fully this our resolution. To forward these our letters of authorization and determination of a call to your Reverances and to convey to you every required power, right and authority which belong to us as the Consistory of the Dutch Church of Freehold and Middletown; in order that, unanimously, if possible, or at least by a majority, you may make out a full call for us, as occupying our place.
Even as we do, by these presents, perfectly convey to you all the requisite power, right and authority aforesaid to call a capable person, not over thirty- five years of age, whether married or unmarried, orthodox according to the teachings of our Reformed Church, being learned and of good deportment in life, and prudent in his intercourse.
To occupy among us the office of the Ministry, having these required qualifications, *
- * as the regular pastor and teacher in the
Dutch Reformed Church of Jesus Christ, at Freehold and Middletown, on the Navesinks, in the Province of New Jersey, situated in America and bordering on New York; * » and as such to conduct preaching services and catechization, to administer the sacraments, and wisely to exercise church discipline in connection with the other overseers of the Congregation, and furthermore to do everything that belongs to a faithful and diligent performance of the Ministry of the Gospel according to the Constitution of the Dutch Reformed Church, and the Synod of Dort, 1618—19.
Our particular demands are as follows:
1. The said minister must hold his preaching services in two different places, namely at Freehold and Middletown, being distant from teach other an hour and a halfs journey, preaching on one preaching day in the one, and on the next preaching day in the other, although the two constitute only one Congregation, being usually called the Church on the Navesinks, and having also one Consistory,
2. From the beginning of November to the end of February, he need not hold more than one service on a preaching day; but during the remainder of the year, twice every Lord's day; as also on New Year's Day, Ascension Day and Pentecost, as is the custom here; but on Christmas but once, on the first day, as also on the second (day of Christmas).
3 In that part of the Congregation wherehe preaches on Sunday, he shall hold catechetical classes during the week,if the weather permits, at such time and places as best suits the community.
4. Once every three months the Lord's Supper shall be celebrated, one quarter in the one Church, and the next quarter in the other Church. The preparatory sermon shall always be delivered on the Thursday before the Supper; but house to house visitation shall only take place twice a year. In order now to search for such a pastor — a person not over thirty-five years of age, either married or unmarried, we the undersigned, Elders and Deacons of the Church on the Navesinks, do promise the one called by you, so long as he shall perform the above mentioned ministrations in a manner becoming a minister of Christ:
1. For his sole use, an entire farm of one hundred acres, being as good a farm land as any in Freehold. On this a family can properly subsist. From such a farm, Rev. Morgan made on an average, at least thirty pounds in money, besides his own bread wheat. If the minister should, at first, be unacquainted with farming and not have hands for that purpose, he can rent the farm, at first, drawing one-third therefrom: or else could rent it out fully for at least fifteen pounds. Nevertheless by the aid and instruction of the well disposed * * of whom, we believe there will be no lack * * there can be but little doubt that in a few years he could manage the farm himself.
2. But we promise him therewith, an annual salary of seventy pounds good current money of this Province, (one hundred aud seventy-five dollars) of which sum shall be paid each half year the just half * * and thus shall be done every year.
3. We also promise him a good and suitable parsonage on said farm, which is located in Freehold, about a quarter of an hour's distance from the Church there, which is about the centre of the Congregation. The people are scattered over an area of about five quarter hours travel in width, and fully three (Dutch) miles (twelve English miles) in length. The people will repair the Parsonage in which Rev. Morgan lived, to the new minister's satisfaction, as soon as he arrives among us, and will keep it in good repair thereafter.
The parsonage is distant from the water (Shrewsbury Inlet) [rather Matawan Creek] about five quarter hour's travel. It is our idea that within a few years the church will be moved close to the parsonage.
Finally: We promise to provide him, on his arrival, with a good riding horse.
Memorandum.— In order further to explain the promised salary referred to herein, it is deemed proper to add that the minister is given his choice as follows: If instead of the farm and seventy pounds, he prefers eighty pounds and free fire wood, to be delivered at his house (he may have it so). But his choice will be given him after his arrival, as only then will he be able to make such a choice. All this we promise in this form, namely;
1. That we, and all the individual mem- bers of the Church have each one for himself, (lit. each head for head) promised, voluntar- ily a certain sum, by subscription, which is to be given by them, from time to time, for payment to the minister. These sums together, properly make up the promised salary of the minister.
2. That we agree, with all sincerity, and with all proper diligence, to gather this promised sum against the appointed time, or see that it is collected at our order; and that the promised salary shall be paid to the Minister, promptly.
3. That we, the undersigned, do pledge ourselves to comply with these two just mentioned articles, by our signatures hereto, qualitate sua, (officially), as the present elders and Deacons; even as this shall be done by all, and severally, of those who shall be elected, froji time to time, after us, as Elders and Deacons, of our Church; ana that before their installation in their respective offices, namely: by also signing this instrument of Call, This to be done according to the unanimous resolution of our Great Consistory. In the meantime, we assure our Minister that we will hold him in such love, honor and esteem as is due a sincere minister of the Holy Gospel.
And as we do not doubt but that you will encounter some capable person, and persuade him to undertake his call, in the fear of the Lord, on these conditions, and promises: and to come over to us, to minister to our people, among whom may be won a rich harvest for Jehovah by a diligent worker; so do we also hope that after he shall have accepted of our call, he will, without delay, do everything in his power to start on his journey as quickly as possible, and on the first suitable opportunity: and our prayers shall ascend to God that He will preserve him from all dangers and make his journey prosperous.
For thus do we pray to the Great Shepherd of the sheep:—that it may please him, according to the abundance of his goodness, to follow up this call, executed in his fear, with his Divine blessing, that it may tend to the magnifying of his mo.->t Holy Name, to the upbuilding of his Church; and the winning and salvation of many souls.
Eldees. Deacons. John Kouvenhoven Dirk Borkloo Cornelius Wykhof Henry Hess Gerrit Schenck John (EVM) Van Meteran Elbert Willemse William Couwenhoven
This Authorization and Determination (statement of terms?) of a Call, took place with my full consent and approval, and of my own motion, for reasons mentioned therein. I have fully given up my office and have both verbally and in writing resigned my office, as the regular pastor and teacher of the Dutch Church of Freehold and Middletown. To this I attest
I testify that all this took place in my pres- ence, at the request of the Rev. (Joseph) Mor- gan, as well as of the Elders and Deacons of Navesinks.
G. Du Bois.
A note on the back of this letter says:— "Rev. Ger. Haegoort examined in the Classis, April 1731." He was ordained April 2, 1731.
"Freehold, September 28, 1731.
Rev. and our Much-Esteemed and Beloved Sirs; Ministers of the Holy Gospel at Amster- dam, — The Revs. Harmanus Van de Wall, Henry Vos, Leonard Beels, Tiberias Reitsma,
Dear Sirs:—We doubt not but that our well intended communication, expressing our respects and gratitude, will reach yon safely. (Ve, your humble servants, desire to inform you of the safe arrival of the minister whom you sent us. Gerardus Haeghoort with his wife, and his wife's mother arrived in this country, all in good health. They landed in New York on July 24 (1731) and were kindly welcomed by Rev. Gualterus DuBais, who showed them every token of friendship. The Lord be thanked for this great benefit and blessing as for His faithfulness that He has so graciously preserved our minister and his agreeable wife and mother from the danger- ous perils of the raging sea, and enabled them to reach these shores in good health. On the third of August, just at sunrise, he landed at our place where he belongs, and was received with much friendliness and joy by the brethren and sisters of the church, who were waiting for him on the shore. Since then he has well demeaned himself, as has al- so the juftvrouw (the Madam). She has, indeed, conducted herself in such a manner as to give the greatest satisfaction to all the brethren and sisters of our Church. Our minister also, Gerardus Haagoord has given great satisfaction ever since his installation over our church as our regular pastor and teacher; and especially in his preaching and the other duties which belong to the Ministry of the Holy Gospel.
For these reasons we find ourselves obliged, as in duty bound, first to thank God the Lord for all His great blessings to us; and secondly, for this great benefit bestowed upon us providing us after long waiting, with an intell- igent, able and to all appearances, a faithful and pious pastor. We trust the Lord will spare him and give him a long life among us, to the glory of his Name, and the general edification of us all. This being the case, we, your humble Servants, find ourselves bound to thank you also, next to God, for the courtesy and care which you still show for the welfare of our Reformed Churches here in New Netherland; in that you think of us over here, and are still providing us with pious pastors and teachers.
Herewith we conclude. We remain profoundly grateful to you, Highly Esteemed Sirs, for the care you have shown for our welfare. We therefore, your humble servants, wish you all prosperity and blessing. May the Lord ^ive you his blessing, favor an! grace, and grant you a long life, and a happy end.
We remain with all respect, Your obedient servants. The Consistory of the Navesinks, In the Name of all
•Mert Willemse John Kouwenhoven." "Rev. Gentlemen and Brethren in Christo, Constituting the High Reverend Classis of Amsterdam:
I have, by this opportunity, the honor to make known to you my fortunate arrival here. I lauded at New York on August 2, 1731. Subsequently I was received with much love in my congregation as their lawful pastor and teacher according to the Act of Classis brought over by me, as well as i>he letter of the gentlemen authorized to call me. I was introduced here by Rev. du Bois, Minister at New York, and subsequently ecclesiastically installed by him.
As to the state of my Congregation: I found this to be in a very distressful condition. This was not only because many had become almost wholly English, and had thus become estranged from the Dutch Reformed Church, of which I have daily experience with the injurious consequence thereof; and to which the lack of Dutch schools has largely contributed: -But also, particularly because there still exists a distressing division and schism occasioned by the preaching of Rev. Frelinghuysen, Minister at Raritan. His preaching at several times and places about here has caused many to separate from this congregation, so that they were not willing to unite in the call of a minister from Holland. Of
- So printed, but should be "Elbert Willemse.
all this the classis has been more fully informed in an extended recital sent to the Classis by the Consistory of the Navesinks in their power of Attorney sent to the Messrs. Van de Wal, Vos, Beels and Reitsnea.
I am therefore greatly surprised that not one of the gentlemen authorized to call me, nor one of the Classis told me anything about these troubles. It is true indeed that Rev. (Joseph) Morgan does not belong to your Classical Assembly. Now when this Congregation wrote for a minister and at the same time put itself in subordination to the Rev. Classis of Amsterdam, it seems to me that it would have been more Christian and fraternal if the Classis had informed their Minister who was about to go over to them, of all the facts in the case; and if thi-y had strengthened him giving him their wise advice and aid how to conduct himself in a congregation all in confusion and scattered over a wide territory. This was also the express request of the Consistory of the Navesinks when they made them- selves subordinate to the Classis and explained the state of the church. What might have been the cause of this lack of Attention to this matter by the classis, or what gave occasion to such conduct I cannot surmise. But although I cannot help wondering why you did not aid me with your experienced advice, yet to my joy your wish has been fulfilled. For the Lord has been pleased so to bless my ministry here to such a degree that those who have separated have come back, little by little, arid have united themselves, once more to the Church.
It is this Rev, Brethren which I desire to communicate to you; not only in fulfillment of my promise that I would correspond with the Rev. Classis, but in Consideration of your complaint of ignorance regarding the state of the church here.
If that complaint was a just one, I leave you to judge for yourselves. Accordingly do not regard these lines as written with any other object than to fulfill my promise and to obey your request. In this I could not avoid mentioning names and affairs of others, as necessarily belonging to the state of my church. In so far as it touches my Congregation, I manage it upon an entirely different basis. I do not pry iato their affairs. As regards the further condition of my church; the members of the two congregations together are only a little more than a hundred. But there is not lacking a great number of adults and youth who may become members. Therefore you can see that there is much to be done by a young minister, especially as there are here all sorts of sects and a commingly of all kinds of hurtful and soul destroying opinions.
Having at present nothing more to communicate, I herewith break off. I pray that the all sufficient God may cause your persons, families and sacred ministeries to overflow with all prosperity and real blessing. I am, and will always prove myself to be Rev. Sirs and Brethren in Christo, Your obedient and ready servant Gerard Haaghoort."
Classis of Amsterdam, July 1732, to Rev. Gerard Haeghoort. Pastor at Freehold, N. J. XXIX-96. No. 20. » * * • » f
"We cannot conceal our astonishment at certain expressions in your letter as if we had known of certain contentions in the church to which Divine Providence has brought you. If we had had the least knowledge of them we would not have failed to inform you when you received your appointment to Freehold, that you might have better known how to conduct yourself in regard to them. But we knew nothing about them" &c J. Noordbeck, Ecc. Amsterdam, Dep. ad res Exteras Praeses Leonard Beels, Ecc. Amst. et Dep ad res Exteras scriba, Amsterdam, July 1732." Joseph Morgan, "Clerk", to Jacobus Romeyn, planter.
Deed dated, Dec. 10, 1714. Ack. May 25,1720. £200.
Town of Freehold. Beginning where James Johnston's line crosses the Middle brook, thence along John Craig's line N. E. & by E. 3 degrees Northwardly to a Beach tree standing on Spotswood's North brook, thence up said brook 45.00, S. E. by S S'wardly thence S. W. & by W. 3 degrees S'wardly 30:00 to James Johnton's Middle brook, thence down the brook N. W. & by N N'wardly to ye place of beginning also upland & meadow formerly Thos. Foreman's & by him sold John Cambell 1698. Being where a small run comes ints Spotswood's Middle Brook below James Miller's corner, thence running down the brook 33.00 on both sides said brook containing 4 acres of Long meadow the whole is bounded S. W. by Middle brook, N. W. John Craig's land, N. E. North brook. E. Barrens all of which were formerly John Campbell's sold to sd Morgan, Feb. 6, 1709, & to Campbell by patent July 1, 1695. Recorded in Book C-2 of Deeds, page 42, in the office of the Secretary of State in Trenton.
Thomas Kinnan, Freehold to Cornelius Vanderveer, Middletown & John Hans, Freehold. Deed dated 28 Jan. 1748. £41, 8s, lid Tract in Freehold beginning at a W. O. marked on 4 sides about 12-in. diameter, at head of Small Run of water called the First brook running into Hop River, thence N. W. 8.19, N. 87 degrees, 30' W. 20.00 to the sand holes; S. 43.30 W. 13.10, S. 15.00, S, 81.30.E. 51.20, N. 37.10, E. 28.20, thence W. 38.00 to where it began. A. 138,26 sq. Perches, where said tra> t of land with more was conveyed Thos. Kinnan (the right thereof) by deed of Sale from James Alexander Oct. 12, 1742, recorded at Perth Aniboy in Liber. A. B., folio 164 and since located to him said Kinnan, by the return of a survey &o. recorded in said Records (excepting 1-3 of mines and minerals).
Witnesses; Joseph Kinnan & Mathias VanKirk.
Proved by J. K. Sept. 14, 1749, before Jonathan Forman, Common Fleas Judge. Recorded in the office of the Secretary of State, Trenton, N.J., in Book G of Deeds, page 429.
Richard Salter, Esqr., and wife Sarah, on June 9th, 1709, by deed of record in Book E, of deeds, page 11, Monmouth County Clerk's office at Freehold, convey to GhertieRomine, widow to Stophel Romine, deceased, for four hundred and fifty pound.
Beginning at a stake standing in the line Between sd Salters & Thomas Boels land by ye edge of a small gully and is one of the corners of John Vankirk's land, thence Run- ning down ye sd gully along the edge of ye upland till it comes to another stake standing opposite to the Mouth of and the gully which comes out of sd Salter's Field, thence running upon a direct course across ye Long Neck as John VanKirk's line Runs till it comes to another branch of hop brook to a maple tree marked, standing by ye old Dam formerly made to flood the swamp, then e down the brook till it comes to the mouth of a small Run which comes out of Elexander Nippers land, thence up ye sd gully as Johannes Couven Vanvouns Line runs till it comes within 15.00 of the intended highway spoken of in said Salter's Deed of sale from Clemint Plumsted the sd Corner being fixed with a B. O. tree marked on 3 sides, thence running upon a Direct line parallel to ye head line of sd Salter's land 41.00 to another stake standing in Thomas Boles line leaving between ye sd line and ye Intended Highway Exact 15.00 as afsd. thence along Thos. Boles line as ye sd line Runs to the first mentioned stake where it began, Bounded N. E. by Thomas Boels land & S. E. & S. by John VanKirk and Johannes Corten Van Vooris, West & N. W. by Elexander Nippers and sd Salter's Land, Intended for ye use of ye Prisbyterion Ministry" This deed was witnessed by William Lawrence, Obadiah Bowne and John Okeson. Upon June 2, 1714, Messrs. Lawrence and Okeson proved its execution before John Reid, a member of the County Court, which was the same year that widow Romain's son Jacobus Romain conveyed the property to John Schenck and Cornelius Cowenhoven of Middletown and Peter Tyson of Freehold, in trust for the use of the congregation.
Joseph Morgan, Jr.'s Timeline
November 6, 1671
Preston, New London, Connecticut, USA
October 14, 1696
Kings County, Long Island, NY
July 24, 1697
September 17, 1699
November 10, 1706
March 8, 1707